DENR orders closure of 14 small-scale mining plants in Agusan Del Sur

Marje Pelayo   •   June 13, 2018   •   4808

 

One of the illegal small-scale mining plants in Agusan Del Sur (Photo courtesy of DENR 13)

 

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Mines and Geosciences Bureau has ordered the closure of 14 illegal small-scale mining plants in Agusan Del Sur this month.

It was in line with the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte and with the observance of Environment Month.

Among the violations of the said mining plants were lack of permit and inaccurate excavation that could lead to landslides.

According to Gerzon Gallego, spokesperson of DENR Caraga, the provincial government of Agusan Del Sur already issued a cease-and-desist order to 84 small-scale mining operations in the province.

However, only 14 were ordered closed so far.

“Sinabihan sila na, ‘Kung di niyo ititigil yan isasara na namin yan’. Talagang may gagawing action ang DENR dahil may order,” Gallego said.

(They’ve been warned, “If you do not stop, we will shut you down.” The DENR will definitely take action because there is an order.)

Meanwhile, the municipal governments are working on providing alternative livelihood source to miners and residents affected by the closure. – Raymund Octobre / Marje Pelayo

Young NPA fighter thankful for being saved by the ‘enemy’

Marje Pelayo   •   November 6, 2019

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — Rebel combatant alias ‘Kent’ was lost for words over his experience in the hands of his “enemies” – the soldiers of the 29th Infantry Battalion – after an encounter in San Isidro, Santiago, Agusan del Norte.

‘Kent’ sustained three gunshot wounds during the crossfire on November 2.

The soldiers captured him as he could no longer walk due to his injury.

He thought that was the end for him.

“Naka-set na sa isip ko na papatayin ako talaga kasi susuko (I set my mind that I would be killed if I surrender),” he said in his local dialect.

“Ang sabi nila kapag may giyera, papatayin ka kapag nahuli ka ng Army (They say in war, you will be killed if the Army captures you),” he added.

But to his surprise, the soldiers brought him to a nearby hospital and while gasping for air, he heard the soldiers telling him to hold on and try to survive.

The young NPA fighter is now recovering from his wound while the military is working on the possible assistance he may receive once he officially decommissions from the rebel group.

“Ang una nating ginagawa ngayon ay maka recover muna siya (What we are focusing on first is his recovery),” said Maj. Francisco Garelllo, the spokesperson of the 402 Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army who handles the case of alias Kent.

‘Kent’ was recruited to the New People’s Army (NPA) when he was only 16 years old.

He realized he spent his two years fighting for the wrong side.

He said he has decided to return to the government and start a new life with his family.

 “Sinasabi naman nila sa akin na, ‘Dapat mabuhay ka kasi sisikapin naming mabuhay ka,’” Kent said of the soldiers who rescued him.

“Kaya pinilit ko ring maka-survive,” he concluded. – MNP (with reports from Dante Amento)

DENR to check rivers for coliform content amid polio outbreak

Marje Pelayo   •   September 25, 2019

Filipino residents cross a hanging bridge along the polluted water of Pasig river in Manila, Philippines, 31 May 2018 (issued on 04 June 2018). EPA-EFE/FRANCIS R. MALASIG

MANILA Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will conduct testing of water samples from all rivers across the country amid the ongoing outbreak of poliovirus.

The test is to determine the quality of and coliform content in the country’s bodies of water after water samples from the sewerage system in Tondo, Manila and Davao city tested positive of poliovirus.

According to DENR Undersecretary Benny Antiporda, Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu has ordered all its regional offices to submit the results as soon as possible.

“Hahanapin namin ang mga pipes na nagtatapon sa mga rivers para masiguro natin na hindi na madagdagan pa ang polusyon ng river (We will trace the pipes that discharge directly into the rivers to make sure that pollution level in our rivers will not escalate),” Antiporda said. – MNP (with details from Grace Casin)

Deer head seized at Manila Port, handed over to DENR

Marje Pelayo   •   September 25, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) turned over on Tuesday (September 24) to the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources (DENR) a piece of deer head smuggled into the Philippines without the necessary import permit.

The BOC said the deer head was discovered inside a parcel declared as household goods and personal effects that arrived at the Manila International Container Port on July 12, 2019 from Guam.

The subject good was seized for violation of Sections 11 and 27 of Republic Act No. 9147 otherwise known as Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act, and Section 117 in relation to Section 1113 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.

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